Second nitrogen plant for Empangeni

08 July 2020 | Web Article Number: ME202019601

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AIR Products recently commissioned a second nitrogen production unit at Tronox Mineral Sands in Empangeni, KwaZulu-Natal.

The plant will be owned and operated by Air Products and will supply high purity nitrogen on an “over the fence” basis to Tronox. The plant uses Air Products proprietary Prism technology to produce nitrogen by the Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) process.

The plant is configured for remote monitoring and operation, and it is managed from the Air Products’ air separation unit and CO2 production hub in Newcastle.

This plant is the second PSA unit installed by the company at the Tronox Mineral Sands facility. As a result of the customer’s requirements for nitrogen increasing, it became necessary to install the second unit.

The project scope included the installation and commissioning of the new unit, as well as the refurbishment of the existing PSA unit which has been in continuous service since 2002.

Air Products Project Manager Robert du Pisanie said one of the challenges was the tight project schedule of just 18 weeks from the initial meeting to on-stream.

“Due to the strong commitment and focus by the Air Products as well as the Tronox teams, we managed to ensure that this deadline was achieved with two days to spare,” he said.

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